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Microsoft provides NetBSD ISO for eMIPS

Over a year ago, researchers at Microsoft ported NetBSD to their eMIPS platform. It is an extensible processor where application-specific circuits can be dynamically loaded/unloaded, such as new on-chip peripherals, debuggers, and security monitors. It can be used to build your own processor or define your own machine instructions. eMIPS runs NetBSD on the Xilinx ML401/2 (Virtex V4), XUP (V5), and on the BEE3 (4xV5). NetBSD also runs on the Microsoft Giano simulator.

Microsoft released their NetBSD installation ISO image with everything: their custom scheduler, full sources, tools, man pages, etc. This ISO is available via (Under the nice NetBSD license.) The NetBSD port includes the eMIPS architecture and a machine independent accelerator framework coded by the Embedded and Reconfigurable Systems Group at Microsoft Research.

The NetBSD modifications are primarily in loadable kernel modules. Some of the changes are documented in "An online scheduler for hardware accelerators on general-purpose operating systems", a technical report (MSR-TR-2010-169) available via This paper also provides the steps for cross-compiling NetBSD and its installation on the Giano simulator, Xilinx ML40x, or XUP board.

(Stay tuned for the Microsoft contributions to be committed to the NetBSD source.)


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September 16, 2013 11:24:35

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